Category Archives: Theology

Apocalypse Not in the Past

There are things in the book of Revelation in the Bible, that did not make sense until the present modern times.  For example, when the two witnesses are killed in Jerusalem, it says the whole world, every tribe, language and nation, watches them as they get up again.  That is only possible with modern television satellites and Internet.  And even the way they celebrate, by “sending gifts” to one another all around the world, portends Amazon.com and the Internet, and sending gifts by mail.

Revelation 11:8-10:

“⁸And their corpses lie on the boulevard of the great city which is spiritually named Sodom  and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.  ⁹And from peoples and tribes and languages and nations they see their corpses for three and a half days.  And they are not allowing their corpses to be placed in a grave.  ¹⁰And those dwelling on the earth rejoice over them, and celebrate, and will send gifts  to one another.  For these two prophets had tormented those dwelling on the earth.”

And speaking of the Internet and satellites, the scenario of the Beast in Revelation chapter 13 controlling the ability of everyone on the planet to buy or sell, would not be possible in the ancient world, or even 40 years ago.  This is only possible with the Internet and satellites, and requires every tribesman in the Congo or Indonesia to be “connected” and “wired.”  No wonder that so called “charitable endeavors” try to get everyone in Africa onto electricity.  That combined with outlawing cash, on the pretext that only criminals use cash.

Typos in Mark?

My son Jacob sent me a list of what he thought might be typos in my translation of Mark:

2:16 – “Torah scholars of the Pharisees” instead of “Torah scholars and the Pharisees”

This is a Greek textual variant between the Nestle/Aland, United Bible Societies’ text, versus the Textus Receptus.  The text as I have it is referring to the Torah scholars belonging to the sect of the Pharisees; there were Torah scholars belonging to other sects as well.  This is not the only place we find this variant; it is in other passages and other gospels too.

2:23 – The heading is “Man Over the Sabbath”. I was wondering if you meant “Lord Over the Sabbath”?

Well, I have it purposely ambiguous, because not only is there a man who is Lord over the Sabbath, Jesus Christ, but also it means man is more important than the Sabbath.  Judaism made the Sabbath the most important thing in the Jewish universe, far more important than people, or any other part of the Torah, even more important than an actual walk with God.

5:35 – “Why inconvenience the teacher any farther?” Farther is used for physical distances. If it is figurative, it should be further. I think it’s a stretch to call it a physical distance.

Yes, further is for abstracts, and farther is for physical distance, but in fact, if you look at it, physical distance is actually what is being talking about.  Jesus had not yet traveled all the way to him, so they are saying, why make Jesus come all the way.  Why make the Rabbi go even farther out of his way.  I do remember thinking about that a long time when I translated it. Maybe I will make a footnote about it.  BTW, people are losing that distinction these days, I have heard even news anchors use the words wrongly.

9:23 – Jesus said to him, “‘If I can’?…” First, shouldn’t the single quote mark be after the question mark? Secondly, why is it necessary, since Jesus is paraphrasing the father?

Yeah, the Greek actually says, quoting the father directly “What is this ‘If you can’ you are saying.”  I’ll have to think about what to do there. But you are right, the quotation marks are not necessary for an indirect quotation.

14:22 – “taking a loaf of bread and blessing” Should there be an it after blessing to indicate that the bread was being blessed?

Here, the Greek word for blessing is also the Greek word often used to mean “giving thanks,” or “praising.”  Jesus was actually blessing God, not the food particularly, but blessing in the sense of praising God for it.  The lesson is, you bless the food by praising God for it. I remember making it deliberately ambiguous so that people would stop and think.  Catholics would have an easier time understanding it, since they use those words more interchangeably than Protestants do.  I guess I should make a footnote explaining it.

Dad

Lying Is Arrogance

In the epistle of James, chapter 3, verse 14, he says, “But if you have bitter jealousy and rivalry in your hearts, do not make yourselves superior to the truth and lie against it.”

This is an amazingly simple but universal truth: when we lie, we are rejecting the truth, and inventing our own reality to substitute for the true reality. This means we are arrogant, because we are making ourselves superior to reality. Making ourselves superior to the truth. Lying, and liars, are a mental illness. But so is any personal reality we prop up to replace God’s reality. It is insane, and evil. Evil and mental illness go hand in hand. They are both chicken and egg simultaneously. Mental illness causes evil, and evil causes mental illness. All because we make ourselves superior to the truth.

James 3:14

James 4;15


Why am I doing yet another translation of the New Testament? One of the main reasons is because, after I studied NT Greek, I kept finding mistakes in the mainstream translations that I was reading. Oh, you say, who are you to say they are wrong and you are right? Fair enough. The Bible says, One man’s testimony seems right, until another cross-examines him. Here is an example from the Epistle of James, the Greek text, with a literal English rendering underneath the Greek words.

James 4:15

Ἐὰν ὁ κύριος θελήσῃ καὶ ζήσωμεν καὶ ποιήσωμεν τοῦτο ἢ ἐκεῖνο.
If – the – Lord – wills – and – we will live – and – do – this – or – that.

There are two instances of the word καὶ in the phrase, but all the mainstream translations ignore the first instance of the word καὶ. They do not translate it. There is no difference in this regard between the Greek manuscripts, no difference in regard to the two instances of καὶ between the Textus Receptus, the Majority Text, and the Nestle-Aland / UBS text. There is no justifiable reason for not translating it.

KVV: If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that
ESV: If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.
NIV: If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that

Now the word καὶ usually means “and” in English, but sometimes means “also,” or “even.”

My translation (DRP) says:

If the Lord wills, we will even be alive and do this or that

Mystery Babylon

What is Mystery Babylon of Revelation chapters 17 and 18?

First of all, it is called by John a “mystery.”  This means that either it is not easily understood or solved, or that it cannot be solved until due time. John is astonished when he sees her.  He would never have expected her perhaps.

A list of traits of Babylon:

1. “has rule over the kings of the earth.”  Rev. 17:8  It takes 10 kings to defeat her.  A Superpower.
2. Great wealth and luxury and high prices.
3. Responsible for the murders of saints and prophets, and indeed “all the slain upon the earth”

Candidates for Babylon I have heard of are: Rome, Jerusalem, New York, London, and Babylon itself rebuilt in Iraq.  Another, non-city candidate I have heard is “the ungodly world system.”

Rev. 17:18 “And the woman which you saw is that great city that has rule over the kings of the earth.”

This one eliminates Jerusalem.  And Rome as well, unless you go with a preterist interpretation, where it was already fulfilled.  But then I would ask, so did “my people come out of her” out of Rome?  No, they did not. And Rome was not burned in one day by the beast and 10 kings.  Present day Rome certainly does not “have rule over the kings of the earth.”

Rev. 17:16 “And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the prostitute, and they will lay her waste, and bare, and eat her flesh, and burn her up with fire.”

So, the 10 kings and the beast will hate this city.  They are the ones who will actually attack and burn Babylon.  This eliminates certainly, the idea that Babylon is the ungodly world system.  Why would the beast and Satan hate its own?

This also tells us that we are talking about maybe a world superpower, because it takes 10 kings to gang up on it to defeat it.  Also, it had had “rule over the kings of the earth.”

I declare that Rome, Jerusalem, and “the ungodly world system” are eliminated as candidates.

That really only leaves New York, London, and Babylon resurrected.

Why New York? (and by extension USA) It has rule of the kings of the earth, both since the United Nations is there, and because other world government entities are there, like the International Monetary Fund, etc.  Also that the USA is a military power throwing its weight around everywhere.

Why London?  Well, that is the heaviest concentration of super-wealthy people in the world, plus the British Intelligence has more control in the world than people realize.
I say that it is the club of the super-wealthy that are generally responsible for more human deaths than any one.

A re-built Babylon is remotely possible.  That would have to be quite a distance in the future.

There is no entity in the past, like would be needed in a preterist point of view, that would fit Babylon, in my opinion.

Where is America in end times prophecy?  It is gone by then, unless America is Babylon.  I am beginning to think that in 2 Thessalonians, where Paul said, “and you know what is restraining the beast, until it is taken out of the way,” I’m beginning to think that only America is in the way.  And that is what must be “taken out of the way” with its pesky constitution.

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Acts 2:47 KJV

In the Greek text in Acts 2:47, the Textus Receptus, Tregelles’ GNT, and Von Soden’s, those three alone have σωζομένους, and Tyndale and the KJV render it “such as should be saved.  But all the other Greek editions have σῳζομένους, and render it something like “those who were being saved.   If anyone has insights on the Greek manuscript basis for the TR reading, let me know.

The Sura of the Jinn

Here is a Sura in the Qur’an in which Muhammad quotes the Jinn, or evil spirits, demons, fiery spirits.  (Qur’an chapter 72)

In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.

072.001 Say: It has been revealed to me that a company of Jinns listened (to the Qur’an). They said, ‘We have really heard a wonderful Recital!
072.002 ‘It gives guidance to the Right, and we have believed therein: we shall not join (in worship) any (gods) with our Lord.
072.003 ‘And Exalted is the Majesty of our Lord: He has taken neither a wife nor a son.

[Note that in verse 1, the Jinn liked the Qur’an.  In verse 2, the demons believe in the Qur’an, and they agree with the spirit of the Qur’an that only their Lord should be worshiped.  In verse 3, we see that their Lord is not the same God as the God of Christianity, because their God does not have a son.  Allah does not have a son, but the God of Christianity does.  They are certainly not the same god or the same lord.
072.004 ‘There were some foolish ones among us, who used to utter extravagant lies against Allah;
072.005 ‘But we do think that no man or spirit should say aught that untrue against Allah.
072.006 ‘True, there were persons among mankind who took shelter with persons among the Jinns, but they increased them in folly.
072.007 ‘And they (came to) think as ye thought, that Allah would not raise up any one (to Judgment).
072.008 ‘And we pried into the secrets of heaven; but we found it filled with stern guards and flaming fires.
072.009 ‘We used, indeed, to sit there in (hidden) stations, to (steal) a hearing; but any who listen now will find a flaming fire watching him in ambush.
072.010 ‘And we understand not whether ill is intended to those on earth, or whether their Lord (really) intends to guide them to right conduct.

[The demons are not sure whether the Lord of the earth intends harm on the earth or not.]
072.011 ‘There are among us some that are righteous, and some the contrary: we follow divergent paths.
072.012 ‘But we think that we can by no means frustrate Allah throughout the earth, nor can we frustrate Him by flight.
072.013 ‘And as for us, since we have listened to the Guidance, we have accepted it: and any who believes in his Lord has no fear, either of a short (account) or of any injustice.
072.014 ‘Amongst us are some that submit their wills (to Allah), and some that swerve from justice. Now those who submit their wills – they have sought out (the path) of right conduct:
072.015 ‘But those who swerve,- they are (but) fuel for Hell-fire’-
072.016 (And Allah’s Message is): “If they (the Pagans) had (only) remained on the (right) Way, We should certainly have bestowed on them Rain in abundance. …”

[In this, the Qur’an agrees with the Bible, insofar as it states that some of the angel-spirit beings follow God, and some follow Satan.

The point of this post, is to show that the God of Islam, Allah, is not the same God as the God of Christianity; and in fact they are enemies.  Allah, the more you read the Qur’an and other Islamic writings, shows himself to be Satan.  The god of Jesus Christ and the apostles, that god has a son, named Jesus Christ.  Anyone who says God does not have a son, is antichrist, according to the apostle John in 1 John 2:22: “Who is the liar, if not someone denying as follows, “Jesus is not the Anointed One”?  This is antichrist, someone denying the Father and the Son.”  To deny that God as a son, is to be antichrist.

 

Diotrephes the First Pope

It seems to me the purpose of the 3rd epistle of John was primarily to combat the error of Diotrephes, the error of the idea of one leader being supreme over the other leaders.  He “wants to be the leader over them,” and disallows the visiting brothers to have any authority in his church.  This is contrary to the teachings of the apostles.  First of all, the apostles were co-equal to each other.  Secondly, they were careful to appoint multiple, co-equal elders in each church.  The wisdom of disallowing one human being to have all the power, is confirmed by the wise men and wise cultures and wise political systems of many or all eras.